October 1, 2014

2013 Scrooges, Angels list shows SC grassroots charities give back more

The holidays prompt charitable giving, but South Carolina Secretary of State Mark Hammond says it pays to know where those donations are really going.

Hammond’s office published its 18th annual Scrooges and Angels list for 2013.  “Angels” represent organizations that exemplify charitable giving with a high percentage of money collected going to the intended charity. The “Scrooges” are groups called charities, but put use very little of the money collected for charitable purposes .  Most of the money goes to pay solicitors and operating costs.

Hammond says that if South Carolinians get calls asking for charitable donations, a great first question to ask is whether the caller is a paid professional solicitor.  The next question should be how much money is going to the organization.

Hammond says people should ask if the organization soliciting donations is registered with the Secretary of State’s office.  Hammond says a solicitor’s reaction can speak volumes.

“If they seem to be uncomfortable or they don’t seem to answer your questions to your satisfaction then I would suggest you do some research and not donate at that time, ” says Hammond.

Hammond says his office should be considered a good resource this time of year.  “If you get a call and you are uncomfortable about it , we’ll be glad to take a look at that organization and make sure they are abiding by the SC Solicitation of Charitable Funds Act.

The organizations designated as this year’s Scrooges are listed below, along with the percentage of expenditures used for program services.  Those recognized are listed in alphabetical order, and are NOT ranked by the Secretary of State.

Army Historical Foundation Inc., Alexandria, VA     16.4%
Breast Cancer Survivors Foundation, Inc., Aventura, FL    19.3%
Feed Our Veterans, New Hartford, NY    25.6%
Firefighters Charitable Foundation, Inc., Farmingdale, NY    7.0%
Gaffney Elks Lodge BPOE #1305,  Gaffney, SC     11.9%
International Union of Police Associations, AFL-CIO,  Sarasota, FL    16.8%
Law Enforcement Officers Relief Fund, Sarasota, FL   0.9%
Louis D. Simmons American Legion Post 215, Inc., Columbia, SC    3.2%
Roger Wyburn-Mason & Jack M. Blount Foundation for the Eradication of
Rheumatoid Disease,  Fairview, TN    34.7%
Walker Cancer Research Institute, Inc., Aberdeen, MD    32.4%

The Angels recognized, with the percentage of their expenditures that went toward their program services, are listed below.  Those recognized are listed in alphabetical order, and are NOT ranked by the Secretary of State.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Columbia, Inc., Columbia, SC    85.6%
Camp Pee Dee Pride, Florence, SC    96.6%
Debi’s Kids, Inc., Charleston, SC    90.3%
Fort Mill Care Center, Inc.,  Fort Mill, SC    97.6%
Healthy Smiles of Spartanburg, Inc., Spartanburg, SC    83.1%
Hitchcock Woods Foundation, Aiken, SC    88.2%
Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society,  Parris Island, SC    88.3%
Second Helpings, Hilton Head Island, SC    80.2%
Southeastern Guide Dogs, Inc., Palmetto, FL    84.6%
Tamassee DAR School, Inc., Tamassee, SC    81.8%